Opposition leader demands election
Opposition leader, Mariano Rajoy of the Partido Popular (PP) called on the prime minister yesterday to call an early election. The call came during the annual state of the nation debate.
The Partido Popular are standing at 45.9% in the latest opinion poll with Prime Minister José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero’s Spanish Socialist Worker’s Party (PSOE) standing at 32.1%.
Following disastrous local elections in May, Zapatero has said that he will stand down at the next election.
More trouble in the debate came from the Catalan Nationalist Convergence and Union (CiU) whose leader said that their ten members would not support the 2012 budget package when it was presented to parliament in September. The PSOE has 169 seats in the 350 seat Congress of Deputies, so without the support of other parties the budget will fall and that in turn will lead to an early election. Elections are due in March 2012.
Meanwhile the 15-M movement has continued its protests since the May elections and intends to continue its occupation of Madrid’s main square, Puerta del Sol in protest at high levels of unemployment (around 20%) which the prime minister admitted now stood at 4.9 million people.